We have based our Indian "Ranger" Motorcycle Jacket on what appears to be the earliest version.
We have found three small variations between this early "Ranger", the one we've made, and Indian's 1951 version. On the earlier jacket the label is placed low on inside front (right hand-side) lining close to the bottom of the zipper. By 1951 the label had moved to the back of the neck area.
The earlier jacket has a graduated/tapered belt, over 2" wide at the side, gradually narrowing towards the front into a 1 1/2" buckle while the 1951 Ranger has a straight 2" belt. The 1951 Jacket was also fitted with an inside pocket, not standard on the earlier jacket.
In our opinion the early version has the better detailing, especially the stylish tapered belt. We have replicated the original early "Ranger" jacket to the finest detail even to the point of reproducing the odd mix of both brass and nickel fastenings.
The zippers are as follows: the center zipper is a genuine new but dull Brass zipper. The three pocket zippers are dull Brass ring and chain pullers again the same as the original "Ranger" while the studs on the collar. Lapels, epaulettes, and ticket pocket are nickel plated brass as is the belt buckle. It's quite rare to find this mix of Nickel and Brass.
Obviously, like the jackets made between 1947-1953, we use only the very finest World famous Front Quarter American Horsehide, exactly the same weight and type as used on the original "Ranger".
Black Cotton Drill as body lining, while the pockets are all lined in heavy off-white cotton drill.
Under the collar there is a throat latch with buttons which can either be buttoned back and hidden when not in use, or worn done-up for extra foul weather protection.
The back has a large one-piece horsehide panel with a bi-swing back in the shoulder area, and there is an extra layer of hide inside the lower back for kidney protection. Finally there are three nickel eyelets in the side panel (underarm) for ventilation.
We feel these jackets are every bit as good now as they were in the 1940's/50's!